In mid-April Sale Sharks announced the signing of fly-half Robert Du Preez jr. for their 19/20 Gallagher Premiership season onwards. He is set to join the Northern Hemisphere team after the conclusion of the current Super Rugby season. It was rumored that Sale had also lured Robert’s younger twin siblings, Jean-Luc and Daniel (Flank & 8th man) to their squad going forward.
It has now come out that due to the twins still being contracted to the Natal based Sharks until the end of the 2020 Super Rugby season, they have instead agreed to a short term loan. The twins will thus turn out for Sale in the Gallagher Premiership whilst missing the Sharks Currie Cup season in South Africa. The young back rowers will then return to South Africa for their Super Rugby commitments. Jean-Luc had previously represented Sale in the 2018/19 season on a loan in similar fashion.
In the last month, Sale have targeted a number of South African players, having already confirmed the signing of two other Sharks players, namely Coenie Oosthuizen and Akker Van der Merwe. With the twins, this brings the total to 5 players that Sale will be utilising from the Sharks current Super Rugby squad. Stormers prop Steven Kitshoff is also heavily linked with a move up North to Sale whilst Bulls lock Lood De Jager has also signed for them.
The Natal based Sharks are currently home to all three Du Preez children, whilst their Dad Robert is the Head Coach of the franchise. Daniel is having a strong season thus far whilst Jean-Luc recently returned to Super Rugby after recovering from an injury he sustained playing for Sale last season. With the three children heading up North, it may be only a matter of time before Du Preez senior joins them overseas. All three players have been capped for the Springboks.
Sale Sharks Director of Rugby, Steve Diamond expressed his delight at the signing of the pair “Both lads are huge men with a commanding physical presence and to be able to add two world class internationals to our forward pack for next year is a huge boost for the club.”
Sale certainly set their eyes on the South African forwards this year and it is likely that they aren’t yet finished with their recruitment’s. Which South African player will be next to sign for the big club up North.
Written by: Nicholas Halsey
Image credit: Ultimate Rugby